Electronics Production | October 02, 2006
Endesa, Renesas and Yitran<br>sign a ground-breaking agreement
Endesa, Spain´s largest utility and one of Europe's five leading electricity companies, Renesas Technology the worldwide leading supplier of semiconductor solutions to the metering industry, and Yitran a leading PLC fabless semiconductor company and the inventor of the IT800 DCSK based powerline modulation technique, have signed an agreement on 27th July 2006 to jointly develop an open specification for Automatic Meter Management (AMM).
Endesa, with the participation of various internal units and the collaboration of many national and international leading meter manufacturers, has defined an innovative AMM system, which will allow for remote reading and operation of its domestic meters. This system will improve the service offered to the clients by the company (multi-tariffs, control of demanded power, connect and disconnect of power supply, etc.) using the low-voltage power distribution lines as physical support for communications. The volume of the meter grid reaches almost 11 million meters in Spain alone. With the implementation of an AMM system, Endesa targets a further improvement of the service quality offered to its customers in a progressive and secure manner. The quality and efficiency will be guaranteed by an open specification that allows the participation of several suppliers with fully interoperable equipment. After analysing existing PLC technologies and a rigorous evaluation process, Endesa has selected the most advanced and suitable solution in order to cover its customers' needs, leading to the agreement signed with Renesas and Yitran. The technology provided by these two companies, adapted to Endesa's requirements, will mean a significant innovation in the metering field using narrowband PLC technology. Whilst Endesa will provide its suppliers with an open specification and the freedom to implement it in any way they choose, they will have the added security of knowing that a cost effective and complete implementation will already be available based on Renesas' M16C PLC platform and The specification puts Endesa's metering concept into practice via a jointly developed networking layer based on a combination of Endesa's meter management know-how and Renesas' experience in the implementation of its widely acclaimed RUN-MTM meter networking software. The physical layer is based on Yitran's IT800 using DCSK modulation technique that has been especially designed to cope with the characteristic distortion phenomena of distribution powerlines. Renesas originally selected Yitran's DCSK technology due to its robust communications capability and signed a license agreement with Yitran in 2002 to incorporate Yitran's DCSK technology into its M16C family of microcontrollers to provide single chip PLC solutions. The M16C was already a microcontroller family of choice for many of the world's leading meter manufacturers and continues to be adopted by them for single and three phase electricity meter applications to this day. Furthermore Renesas developed its high performance RUN-MTM networking implementation to run on the single chip M16C PLC microcontrollers and this has since been proven in the field in several real life implementations. Yitran's IT800 DCSK based technology is widely used around the world for metering as well as for smart home and white goods appliances. The technology was chosen as a standard by the Echonet forum in Japan, as well as ITRI in Taiwan and by the LNCP forum in Korea. IT800 DCSK has also been selected as the HomePlug base line technology for the coming Command and Control standard HPCC.
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